The under-construction Kushinagar Airport in Uttar Pradesh has received the International Airport license from Director General of Civil Aviation (DGCA). Once operational, this will be the third international airport in UP after Lucknow and Varanasi. With this, UP is set to become the state with the highest number of airports after the upcoming Ayodhya Airport also joins the list.
The expansion of air connectivity and regional connectivity has been on the wish list of UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath ever since he came to power in 2017. Uttar Pradesh already has seven functional airports including Lucknow, Varanasi, Agra, Gorakhpur, Kanpur, Prayagraj and Hindon and the eighth one in Bareilly is going to be added to the list on March 8 with domestic flights commencing from here.
The details of the expansion of air services in UP were also presented by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath in the meeting of NITI Aayog last week. Uttar Pradesh government came out with its new civil aviation policy in 2017 which aimed at promoting the overall development of the civil aviation sector in UP and generating greater business and employment opportunities.
Three-and-a-half years ago, the state had only four active airports namely Lucknow, Agra, Varanasi and Gorakhpur. Three more airports including Prayagraj, Kanpur, Hindon are now functional under the Yogi govt while Bareilly is also ready to start flights soon.
The government is also working on developing 10 more airports in the state which includes Azamgarh, Aligarh, Chitrakoot, Moradabad, Sonbhadra, Shravasti, Ayodhya, Kushinagar and Saharanpur (Sarsawa) which are under construction and will be operational soon.
Soon, direct air services will be available to various countries from Lucknow, Varanasi, Ayodhya, Kushinagar and Gautam Budh Nagar. Once all the 17 airports become functional, the state will get an air-connectivity boost, along with a boost in tourism and employment opportunities as well, said Civil Aviation Secretary, Surendra Singh.